Tom Lanham

Dave Pirner comes to town with Soul Asylum. (Courtesy Jenn Devereaux)

Soul Asylum, Keane, Clan of Xymox in The City

Longtime acts remain artistically relevant in 21st century

Dave Pirner comes to town with Soul Asylum. (Courtesy Jenn Devereaux)
Miranda Lambert has a positive outlook on her new album “Wildcard.” (Courtesy Bubba Sellars)

New music from Miranda Lambert, Best Coast, The Seshen

Artists deal with, and overcome, darkness in latest projects

Miranda Lambert has a positive outlook on her new album “Wildcard.” (Courtesy Bubba Sellars)
Michael Des Barres plays music from his long, varied career at Bottom of the Hill on Feb. 22. (Courtesy photo)

Michael Des Barres, William DuVall, The Amazons in town

Veteran rockers boast long, varied careers

Michael Des Barres plays music from his long, varied career at Bottom of the Hill on Feb. 22. (Courtesy photo)
Bat For Lashes (aka Natasha Khan) has a new album “Lost Girls.” (Courtesy Logan White)

Bat For Lashes, Stonefield, Big Country on tour

BTL songwriter Natasha Khan busy with many diverse projects

Bat For Lashes (aka Natasha Khan) has a new album “Lost Girls.” (Courtesy Logan White)
Caroline Polachek appears in a sold-out show at the Independent. (Courtesy Nedda Asfari)

Caroline Polachek, Mattiel Brown, Juliana Hatfield in town

Polachek promoting tuneful solo album ‘Pang’

Caroline Polachek appears in a sold-out show at the Independent. (Courtesy Nedda Asfari)
Guy Garvey, third from left, brings Elbow to Oakland on Jan. 20. (Courtesy Paul Husband)

Chatting with Elbow’s Guy Garvey, Maverick Sabre, Midge Ure

Garvey recounts troubled times in ‘Giants of All Sizes’

Guy Garvey, third from left, brings Elbow to Oakland on Jan. 20. (Courtesy Paul Husband)
Lily Somerville, left, and Megan Markwick are IDER. (Courtesy Rory James)

IDER’s in perfect harmony, Los Lobos reminisce

Young U.K. duo, vetern rockers in The City this week

Lily Somerville, left, and Megan Markwick are IDER. (Courtesy Rory James)
Critics are comparing English rocker Sam Fender to Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. (Courtesy photo)

Ten top rock records of 2019

Nothing comes close to Sam Fender’s ‘Hypersonic Missiles’

Critics are comparing English rocker Sam Fender to Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. (Courtesy photo)
Indiana-bred a cappella group Straight No Chaser brings its holiday concert to Davies Symphony Hall on Sunday. (Courtesy photo)

A cappella heroes Straight No Chaser stick together

Singers bring their fun seasonal show to The City

Indiana-bred a cappella group Straight No Chaser brings its holiday concert to Davies Symphony Hall on Sunday. (Courtesy photo)
The Joy Formidable — from left, Matthew James Thomas, Rhiannon “Ritzy” Bryan and Rhydian Dafydd— have reissued 2009’s “A Balloon Called Moaning” in a 2019 edition accompanied by a newly recorded acoustic Welsh language version. (Courtesy Timothy Hiatt)

Joy Formidable’s Ritzy Bryan hides out in U.S.

Welsh songwriter uses time off tour to reflect in Utah

The Joy Formidable — from left, Matthew James Thomas, Rhiannon “Ritzy” Bryan and Rhydian Dafydd— have reissued 2009’s “A Balloon Called Moaning” in a 2019 edition accompanied by a newly recorded acoustic Welsh language version. (Courtesy Timothy Hiatt)
Pete Yorn, whose new album is “Caretakers,” appears at the Great American Music Hall on Monday. (Courtesy Jim Wright)

Pete Yorn calls his new songs ‘caretakers’

Rocker references sounds on popular 2001 debut

Pete Yorn, whose new album is “Caretakers,” appears at the Great American Music Hall on Monday. (Courtesy Jim Wright)
Role Model, aka Tucker Pillsbury, plays The Rickshaw Stop on Thursday. (Courtesy photo)

Role Model’s music comes from loneliness

Composer records distinctive sparse tunes in a closet

Role Model, aka Tucker Pillsbury, plays The Rickshaw Stop on Thursday. (Courtesy photo)
Michael Koppy appears at Book Passage in San Francisco’s Ferry Building on Dec. 14 to discuss his 2019 manifesto “Words and Music — Into the Future.” (Courtesy photo)

Michael Koppy sounds out on bad songwriting

‘Words and Music’ a vigorous critique of the sorry state of pop offerings

Michael Koppy appears at Book Passage in San Francisco’s Ferry Building on Dec. 14 to discuss his 2019 manifesto “Words and Music — Into the Future.” (Courtesy photo)
JD McPherson brings “Socks: A Rock ‘n’ Roll Christmas Tour” to The City this week. (Courtesy Jim Herrington)

JD McPherson’s got the holiday spirit

‘Socks’ serves up retro rockin’ Christmas originals

JD McPherson brings “Socks: A Rock ‘n’ Roll Christmas Tour” to The City this week. (Courtesy Jim Herrington)
Los Straitjackets appear with X at the Independent in San Francisco on Dec. 9-11. (Courtesy Yep Roc Records)

Los Straitjackets celebrating 25 years of surf sounds — with masks

Instrumental band’s signature look inspired by luchador culture

Los Straitjackets appear with X at the Independent in San Francisco on Dec. 9-11. (Courtesy Yep Roc Records)
Of Monsters and Men — co-lead singer Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir is at center — plays Not So Silent Night at SAP Center on Dec. 7. (Courtesy Meredith Truax)

Of Monsters and Men inspired by the inexplicable

Icelandic band on tour with new recording ‘Fever Dream’

Of Monsters and Men — co-lead singer Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir is at center — plays Not So Silent Night at SAP Center on Dec. 7. (Courtesy Meredith Truax)
From left, Marc Campbell, Mike Murphy, Jesse Blum, Mandy Lee, Etienne Bowler and Will Hehir are MisterWives. (Couresty Shervin Lainez)

MisterWives’ Mandy Lee writes songs from the heart

New York band on tour with EP ‘mini bloom’

From left, Marc Campbell, Mike Murphy, Jesse Blum, Mandy Lee, Etienne Bowler and Will Hehir are MisterWives. (Couresty Shervin Lainez)
Brittany Howard, on tour with her solo album, plays two Bay Area shows this week. (Courtesy Danny Clinch)

Alabama Shakes’ Brittany Howard goes solo

Eclectic album ‘Jaime’ pays tribute to singer’s late sister

Brittany Howard, on tour with her solo album, plays two Bay Area shows this week. (Courtesy Danny Clinch)
Toma Banjanin and Star Kendrick are Geowulf. (Courtesy photo)

Stars aligned for Geowulf’s Star Kendrick to make music

Dream pop duo tours with ‘My Resignation’

Toma Banjanin and Star Kendrick are Geowulf. (Courtesy photo)
Chelsea Wolfe’s new recording is “Birth of Violence.” (Courtesy John Crawford)

Chelsea Wolfe returns to nature

Gothic folk artist creates new album at secluded home

Chelsea Wolfe’s new recording is “Birth of Violence.” (Courtesy John Crawford)